Wednesday, September 28

FBI Wants Cao de Bens for Helping North Korea Evade Sanctions


The Catalan could spend up to 20 years in a US prison

Alejandro Cao de Bens, special delegate of the North Korean Government in 2016.
  • USA The New York prosecutor accuses the Spaniard Cao de Bens and a Briton for helping North Korea to evade sanctions

The FBI has issued this Monday a search and arrest warrant against the Catalan Alejandro Cao de Bens, whom it accuses of conspiring together with a US citizen to help North Korea to evade some of the economic sanctions imposed by the US, for which could spend up to 20 years in an American prison.

Cao de Bens, founder of the organization friends of korea and defender of the Kim Jong-un regime, would have recruited a “cryptocurrency expert” to provide services to the North Korean government during a conference on technology in Pyongyang that he organized in 2018, says the FBI.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation details that the Catalan facilitated the trip of the American expert Virgil Griffith to the Asian country to attend the conference and that he organized a second event on the subject in 2020.

Griffitha former developer of the Ethereum cryptocurrency, pleaded guilty last year to conspiring to help North Korea evade sanctions and was sentenced in the US to more than five years in prison and a fine of $100,000.

The FBI accuses Cao de Bens of taking “measures to hide these activities from US authorities.”

Cao de Bens published this Monday a message on his Twitter account in which he claims not to know why he is wanted.

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“I don’t know why everyone is looking for me today. I’m in Jerusalem, next to Glgotha ​​eating a durum of falafel,” he wrote next to a photo of the durum.

The Catalan would have also had the help of a British citizen, Christopher Douglas Emms, who was charged along with Cao de Bens last April by the New York Southern District Attorney for “conspiring” with Griffith to “illegally supply cryptocurrencies and services with block chain technology” to Pyongyang.

The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York issued a federal arrest warrant in late January against Cao de Bens for allegedly conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), which allows The US establish economic sanctions against countries that “pose a threat”.

Cao de Bens, 47, who acts as the unofficial representative of North Korea in Spain, faces a maximum of 20 years in prison in the United States for the crimes of which he is accused, as is Emms.

The Catalan, who has an aristocratic origin, has previously had problems with the Spanish justice for being allegedly involved in a arms trafficking plot that was dismantled six years ago.

Alejandro Cao de Bens has identified himself for twenty years as a special delegate of the Ministry of Cultural Relations with Foreigners of the North Korean government. He is from Tarragona and has been working for the North Korean government for years.

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